It’s been a long time coming, but Netgear has finally refreshed its elderly ReadyNAS family. The ReadyNAS 314 four-bay model is the first in line for review, and introduces a raft of new features, including the ReadyOS 6 software. The 314 uses the same compact and solidly built chassis as its predecessors. Inside, processing power is boosted with a 2.1GHz Atom and 2GB of DDR3 RAM. Port permutations have also improved: along with dual Gigabit, there are pairs of USB 3 and eSATA ports, plus HDMI for media playback on a TV. External expansion is also possible using Netgear’s EDA500 five-bay expansion boxes, which are attached via eSATA.
Initial setup is faster than before: Netgear’s ReadyCloud portal discovers the appliance and sets it up. The portal shows registered appliances, and allows the user to view and delete files and folders. Files can also be copied directly to the appliance by dragging them into the portal.
ReadyCloud also has a quick link to the new Dashboard console. The first thing to notice is how much more responsive this is compared with the old RAIDiator console. Netgear has swapped its file system from EXT4 to BTRFS, which scores highly over the opposition by supporting unlimited block-level snapshots.
They can be activated during iSCSI LUN creation by ticking the continuous protection checkbox. Hourly, daily or weekly snapshots can be set, and to recover a file, folder or LUN, you view a timeline chart, select a snapshot and choose the rollback option. Netgear also now supports iSCSI thin provisioning. Groups determine the IQN, and all LUN members appear to an initiator when it logs on to the target portal.
Distributors BMS Technology, Dicker Data, Ingram Micro, Multimedia Technology, Synnex
Launched 18 March 2013
Verticals Netgear says: "It is the perfect SMB desktop storage solution for SMBs across all verticals."
The reviewers say "The new OS gives the ReadyNAS 314 a chance to compete on a level footing with the likes of Qnap and Synology. It isn’t the fastest four-bay box, but it packs in plenty of features."
How to pitch it The ReadyNAS 314 gives SMBs an advanced and easy-to use desktop storage solution for centralising, securing and controlling access to digital assets.